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Humanitarian Agenda 2015--Iraq Country Study--Taking Sides or Saving Lives--Existential Choices for the Humanitarian Enterprise in Iraq

Humanitarian Agenda 2015--Iraq Country Study--Taking Sides or Saving Lives--Existential Choices for the Humanitarian Enterprise in Iraq

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Iraq places the frailties and fault-lines of the humanitarian enterprise in stark relief. Perhaps more than any other highly politicized context, Iraq has fuelled a defensiveness and sense of existential threat among many in the humanitarian profession. And yet, while Iraqis have paid long and dearly for the flaws in the international humanitarian apparatus, evidence from ground-level suggests that pronouncements of the demise of principled humanitarian action are premature. Iraq may provide the strongest affirmation yet of the endurance of the Dunantist ethos and of the principled practice of humanitarianism.
Iraq places the frailties and fault-lines of the humanitarian enterprise in stark relief. Perhaps more than any other highly politicized context, Iraq has fuelled a defensiveness and sense of existential threat among many in the humanitarian profession. And yet, while Iraqis have paid long and dearly for the flaws in the international humanitarian apparatus, evidence from ground-level suggests that pronouncements of the demise of principled humanitarian action are premature. Iraq may provide the strongest affirmation yet of the endurance of the Dunantist ethos and of the principled practice of humanitarianism.

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Published by: Feinstein International Center on Aug 11, 2008
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Taking Sides or Saving Lives:Existential Choices for theHumanitarian Enterprise in Iraq
Humanitarian Agenda 2015 
 
(HA2015)
 is a policy research project aimed atequipping the humanitarianenterprise to more effectively addressemerging challenges around four major themes: universality, terrorismand counter terrorism, coherence,and security. As with all HA2015materials, the Feinstein InternationalCenter welcomes feedback andcriticism from all quarters. Pleasecontact the author atghansen@islandnet.com or theHA2015 Lead Researcher AntonioDonini at antonio.donini@tufts.edu.
Humanitarian Agenda 2015Iraq Country Study
By Greg HansenIndependent ResearcherJune 2007
The Feinstein International Center (FIC)
develops and promotesoperational and policy responses toprotect and strengthen the lives andlivelihoods of people living in crisis-affected and marginalizedcommunities. FIC works globally inpartnership with national andinternational organizations to bringabout institutional changes thatenhance effective policy reform andpromote best practice.Other country studies available atfic.tufts.edu
3. The Context................................................................................64. The Current Situation...............................................................105. Overview of Findings.................................................................156. Methodology..............................................................................17II. The Findings.................................................................................201. The Perceptions and Knowledge Gap.........................................202. Universality...............................................................................223. Terrorism and Counter-terrorism..............................................294. Coherence, the Political/Military/Humanitarian Relationship....345. Security....................................................................................456. Who Has the Comparative Advantage in Iraq, and Why?............54III. Conclusion, Recommendations, Directions for Future Research...561. Conclusion................................................................................562. Recommendations.....................................................................573. Directions for Further Research................................................62For Further Reading..........................................................................64Annex A............................................................................................66Annex B............................................................................................68
 
 
Acknowledgments
I am very grateful to my three Iraqi colleagues on the research team. For reasons of their personal safety, theycannot be named here, but this research would have been impossible without their courage, dedication, and hard work under the most difficult of circumstances.
Feinstein International Center 
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Acronyms
CCISUA Coordinating Committee for International Staff Unions & AssociationsCERP Commander’s Emergency Response Program (US)CPA Coalition Provisional AuthorityCOIN Counter-Insurgency Operations (US)DART Disaster Assistance Response Team (US)DFID Department for International Development (UK)DSRSG Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary GeneralEC European CommunityECHO European Community Humanitarian OfficeFICSA Federation of International Civil Servants AssociationsHOC Humanitarian Operations Center (US military)IASC Interagency Standing Committee (U.N.)ICRC International Committee of the Red CrossIDP Internally Displaced PersonIFJ International Federation of JournalistsIFRC International Federation of Red Cross/Red Crescent SocietiesIOM International Organization for MigrationIRCS Iraqi Red Crescent SocietyIRFFI International Reconstruction Facility for Iraq IRIN Integrated Regional Information Network JNEPI Joint NGO Emergency Preparedness InitiativeMNF Multi-National Force–Iraq NCCI NGOs Coordination Committee in Iraq OCHA [United Nations] Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian AffairsPDS Public Distribution SystemSRSG Special Representative of the Secretary GeneralUNAMI United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq UNCT United Nations Country TeamUNDSS United Nations Department of Safety and SecurityUNHCR United Nations High Commissioner for RefugeesUNICEF United Nations Children’s FundUSAID United States Agency for International DevelopmentWFP United Nations World Food Programme
Feinstein International Center 
J U N E 2 0 0 7
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